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Ex-Trump official Chad Wolf spoke to Jan 6 committee before revelation about missing texts: report

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A top Homeland Security official under the Trump administration has already spoken with the January 6 committee in Congress, long before his name surfaced in connection to the missing Secret Service messages investigators are seeking.

Former acting DHS secretary Chad Wolf cooperated with the committee several months ago, CNN reports.

Mr Wolf served in the Trump administration during and after January 6, and investigators may be interested in whether Mr Wolf discussed invoking the 25th amendment with other cabinet-level leaders to remove Mr Trump from office.

That was all likely before the January 6 committee learned that numerous messages were missing from the government devices of Mr Wolf, his deputy Ken Cuccinelli, as well as top Secret Service agents, covering a crucial period surrounding the January 6 riots at the US Capitol.

“It is extremely troubling that the issue of deleted text messages related to the January 6 attack on the Capitol is not limited to the Secret Service, but also includes Chad Wolf and Ken Cuccinelli, who were running DHS at the time,” January 6 committee chairman Bennie Thompson said in a statement.

Mr Wolf has said he did nothing wrong in relation to handling his correspondence records.

“I complied with all data retention laws and returned all my equipment fully loaded to the Department,” he wrote on Twitter on Thursday. “Full stop. DHS has all my texts, emails, phone logs, schedules, etc. Any issues with missing data needs to be addressed to DHS.”

DHS notified its internal watchdog this February that the messages were lost in a “reset” of government devices after the men left office.

The communications could hold evidence further illustrating how Donald Trump pressed DHS to try and back up his false election claims, and could shed light on the more explosive claims from the January 6 hearings so far, such as a story about Donald Trump attacking a Secret Service agent who wouldn’t take him to join supporters marching on the Capitol.

The questions around the communications mirror those at the Secret Service, which notified Congress in July that numerous texts from agents had been deleted, despite multiple requests from committee investigators to access them.

The Secret Service has also denied wrongdoing and said it began migrating the data in January 2021, a month before the DHS office of the inspector general requested the communications.

“The insinuation that the Secret Service maliciously deleted text messages following a request is false,” a spokesperson told The Independent earlier this month. “In fact, the Secret Service has been fully cooperating with the OIG in every respect – whether it be interviews, documents, emails, or texts.”



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